Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Getting (a)Head In Life

In the book of First Samuel the writer notes that David, quite a few days after killing Goliath, was still dragging his rotting head around behind him where ever he went. Anyone who has even been around something which has been dead for a long time unattended can attest that the smell and the composition of whaever had died makes it nasty at best to be near, much less to drag around behind you. Although there is no commentary which explains this bizarre piece of triva, I can make a Human Nature based guess as to why David would have done it; Up to that point, David's accomplishments were small and relatively obsure. He bested some lions and bears out in the field while watching his sheep, but he never did anything that people "knew" him for. Goliath's head was David's claim to "fame", and he wasn't going to let go of it just because some maggots made it their summer home...

The more things happen regarding the projects I am involved with, the more I can both understand this attitude and see how easy a trap it is to fall into. While it's great to have something "big" happen to you, it's also a bit more than just desparate behavior to make that your personally defining moment. I know alot of people who have some early success in their career and who, like David and his trophy, never get over that. Using one success as a springboard for getting more opportunities is smart, but quite often it becomes something that freezes a person's creativity. And, like the aforementioned head, pulling out the same tired accomplishment starts to stink after awhile...

While David did alot of great things during the rest of his life, nothing was as "big" (pun intended) as killing Goliath. Sometimes, that will happen even to guys with long careers filled with good work. The key is to continue to work like nothing has happened and move on to new things...

Eventually, out of necessity I guess, David dropped the head and moved on. He had shown so many people by that point, however, that a very popular song was written about the whole head chopping incident, and that song followed him around for years. He even lost a job over it, because his employer aparently was related to Goliath and didn't like the whole "look at me- look at me" attitude of the whole thing.

Not that it was the end of the world, but it must have been an embarassment to David at the very least....

0 Comments:

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home